MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers on Monday said he would move as quickly as possible to make appointments to 82 positions that became vacant after a contentious court ruling last week.
The governor said some of those appointments could include people former Gov. Scott Walker appointed and the Legislature confirmed in a December session a Dane County judge deemed illegal.
The governor’s vow comes amid a maelstrom of legal action following a Dane County judge’s controversial decision to invalidate a set of laws Republicans passed in December in a special session of the Legislature the judge ruled was unconstitutional.
Former Gov. Scott Walker made the eighty-two appointments and the Legislature confirmed them December’s extraordinary session. Evers withdrew the appointments after Dane County Judge Richard Niess struck down the lame duck laws and vacated the appointments, which include a University of Wisconsin System regent and the commissioner of the Public Service Commission.
“We’re going to fill them as soon as we can,” Evers said.
Evers would need to move quickly. The Wisconsin Court of Appeals is set to rule any day on whether to stop Niess’ ruling from going into place, temporarily suspending the governor’s new authority.
“At the end of the day that stay I don’t believe is going to impact our efforts to fill those positions, but we’re not going to delay,” Evers added.
Evers said he may end up re-appointing many of the people who filled the positions prior to Niess’ ruling, adding that many of roles are nonpartisan.
Judge Niess’ ruling gives Evers the authority to appoint a new CEO to lead the Wisconsin Economic Development Agency, but Evers said he won’t do that for now.